Wednesday, August 15, 2018
   
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Syria's war: Allies and opponents

Where do the world powers stand on the US-led attacks in Syria?

On April 14, the US led attacks on several locations in Syria after a suspected chemical weapons attack in the former rebel stronghold of Douma.

The US was joined in these attacks by two allies, the UK and France, but they are not the only countries on the US' side. 

There have been clear, constant alliances at play since the beginning of the Syrian war. 

NATO

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said on Saturday that all NATO allies back Syria air attacks carried out by the US, UK and France on chemical weapons targets in Syria.

He went on to say that the attacks were "intended to degrade the Syrian regime's chemical weapons capability" and deter further chemical attacks on civilians such as the one in Douma.

UK

Theresa May came under fire in the UK parliament for bypassing parliament in her decision to order UK involvement, but in a televised press conference she said "there was no alternative". 

"We have sought to use every possible diplomatic channel to achieve this, but our efforts have been repeatedly thwarted," she added.

France

According to French defence ministry officials, its military fired 12 missiles during Saturday's attack on Syria, and there was no indication the missiles had been intercepted.

China

China's foreign ministry announced that the US-led attacks violated international law and that a political settlement was the only way to resolve the Syrian crisis. 

Russia

Shortly after the attack, Russia released the locations that were struck, information that had been widely reported globally. Vladimir Putin, speaking to state media in Russia, warned that the attacks could "lead to a "new wave of asylum seekers from Syria and the whole region".

Russian media outlets reported Russian military officials as saying that Syrian air defence had shot down at least 71 of the cruise missiles fired by the US, UK and France.

At a news conference in Moscow on Saturday, Lieutenant-General Sergey Rudskoy said at least 103 cruise missiles, including Tomahawks, were fired into a number of targets in Syria.

Iran

Iran has been supporting the Syrian government since the beginning of the war. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had denounced the US-led attacks as a "crime".

Syria

Syria's state news agency led with a condemnation of the air attacks and the claim that most of the missiles fired by the Western states had been intercepted. SANA also published a story claiming the Syrian army had discovered a laboratory used by rebels for "making toxic materials". 

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